CRISPY GARLIC SEA BASS
Black cod with natural apple-wood smoked bacon and toasted garlic over cannellini beans.
Black cod with natural apple-wood smoked bacon and toasted garlic over cannellini beans. Sounds complicated, but it really isn’t when you break it down. The cannellini bean is just a white Italian kidney bean. They are available dried, canned, or if you’re lucky, in a bottle. They are delicate in texture so be careful not to overcook.
The black cod, also known as sablefish or butterfish, is not really a cod at all. It’s a deep water, black-skinned fish similar looking to a cod found in British Columbia and Alaskan waters. It has a delicate texture and buttery taste which contrasts beautifully with the smoky crisp bacon and toasted garlic topping of this dish. It’s also very rich in omega-3 fatty acids so don’t feel too bad about the bacon topping for this recipe. You can pick up great apple wood smoked bacon in Vancouver at Oyama Sausage Company on Granville Island. For info on their local products visit www.oyamasausage.ca
Two six ounce pieces of fresh black cod; more if you are really hungry
You can sub any firm white fish such as halibut.
Four pieces of apple wood smoked bacon cut into small pieces and fried. Not crisp they will crisp in oven
Four tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Three green onions chopped
1 cup white wine; citrus notes preferred for this dish a sauvignon blanc works
Juice from one lemon
1-tablespoon fennel seed; grind with a mortar and pestle if possible
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Three tablespoons of toasted garlic; recipe below
1 bottle or can of cannelloni beans
Two diced fresh tomatoes. One red and one yellow or orange makes a nice mix of colour on the dish
Chopping the veggies, toasting the garlic, and frying the bacon are the first steps and should be prepared before you start to sear the fish.
FOR THE TOASTED GARLIC:
1. Heat a skillet and add two tablespoons of oil to coat the bottom.
2. Add the four or five cloves of chopped garlic, stir occasionally and when golden brown scoop onto paper towel to absorb oil. It takes just a few minutes so don’t leave or it will burn.
FOR THE BEAN MIXTURE:
1. In a saucepan over low heat place a tablespoon of oil, the green onions and fennel seed. Sauté for just a few minutes add a pinch of salt.
2. Add the tomatoes and cook for about three minutes until the tomatoes just start to break down.
3. Add the beans and heat through on low.
FOR THE BLACK COD AND FINISH:
1. Season the fish with salt and pepper, add olive oil to a heated medium fry pan and sear until skin is crispy on bottom, about three or four minutes.
2. Pour the heated bean mixture into an oven safe stoneware, ceramic, or glass-baking dish
3. Place the seared fish on top of the bean mixture.
4. Deglaze the pan that you seared the fish in with the white wine and pour the liquid over the bean and fish mixture.
5. Sprinkle with the lemon juice top with the bacon pieces and finish in the oven at 375F for approx. 5-7 minutes.
6. Top with the toasted garlic and serve.
This recipe serves two and is great for a romantic dinner and goes great served with roasted red pepper strips over peppery wilted mustard greens.